Oregano is natural herb with many uses and benefits.
In fact, ancient practices have caught up with us today, more than ever before.
These days, we look for natural herbs that were in the medicine cabinet of the ancient world.
All of us wonder what our ancestors knew that we don’t know.
The oregano plant (Origanum Vulgare) is one of such herbs that was held in high regard for centuries.
It is valued for its food preservative and antiseptic properties, and today, we still have access to it in different therapeutic forms.
Read on to reap the benefits of this ancient super herb!
Oregano is an herb that is most commonly thought of as an ingredient in Italian dishes.
It can be added to many dishes and has a beautiful aroma and flavor.
Of course you probably already know how wonderful oregano makes your food taste, but are you aware of all of the fantastic oregano benefits?
There are many oregano benefits related to health and healing.
It is safe and effective as an alternative medicine for a variety of ailments.
Oregano’s medicinal properties are found in its leaves, and flowering stem and the herb is cultivated and sold in many forms.
This aromatic herb is part of the mint family and is cultivated worldwide.
The potent oil and the leaves are used medicinally, but they are both very different.
The oil from oregano is a potent purifier that offers an abundance of positive effects on your health.
Ever since the ancient Greeks discovered its medicinal power, oregano plant extract and oil has been used for its many health benefits.
While you may be tempted to raid your spice rack for this miracle herb, you would be wasting your time.
The beneficial type of oregano grows in the wild (Origanum Vulgare), and the standard kitchen spice oregano (Origanum Marjoram) does not contain the same vital compounds.
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Here’s Why Oregano Is So Awesome
Oregano has been shown to have anti-parasitic effects in the intestines.
It has long been used to treat bacterial and parasitic infections in both the colon and intestines.
Herbalists recommend it for the treatment of E. coli bacterial infections.
Other oregano benefits include antifungal properties, which makes it an effective treatment for Candida infections.
Compounds in the herb have been found to kill Candida albicans. It kills the harmful fungi, without affecting the natural intestinal flora.
It is believed that two compounds that occur naturally in the herb, thymol, and carvacrol, are what gives the herb its antifungal properties.
Another reason to stock up on Oregano is to boost your vitamin intake.
Oregano is rich in Vitamin K, which is not a vitamin that many people pay attention to when they are looking to supplement their vitamin intake.
Health issues like osteoporosis and coronary heart disease have been linked to a deficiency in Vitamin K.
Oregano Wild Oil Uses and Composition
Wild oregano contains two compounds, thymol, and carvacrol, that have substantial effects on disease-causing microorganisms that can hurt people.
It is hailed as a wonderful purifier, antibacterial, antifungal, and antiparasitic extract that can be used in myriad ways to protect you from infections and help clear them up as well, should you already have one.
In the best wild oregano oil capsules, the carvacrol content can be over 79% balanced against a low and safe thymol content of less than 6%.
Thymol and carvacrol are natural plant chemicals with antimicrobial properties.
They are also found in essential oils like thyme and are used in products like Listerine.
Thymol and carvacrol are members of a class of plant chemicals known as monoterpene phenols.
They have potent natural antimicrobial properties and are significant components of the essential oils of thyme and oregano.
These natural chemicals have long been recognized for their antibacterial uses and modern research is now verifying these properties.
Monoterpene phenols are created by plants and are significant components of essential oils.
They are organic (carbon-based) molecules that are made up of two connected rings of carbon.
In contemporary aromatherapy, essential oils that contain carvacrol and thymol are known as natural antibacterials and antifungals.
In the late 19th century, thymol was an isolated substance and an ingredient in liquid Listerine (which was first used as a surgical antiseptic).
A U.S. Department of Agriculture study showed that oregano delivered more antioxidant activity than many other herbs used in the study.
It had 42 times more antioxidant properties than apples, 12 times more than oranges and 30 times more than potatoes.
It contains quercetin, which is a very potent antioxidant and is particularly effective against ovarian, breast and endometrial cancers.
Terpenes are also prominent constituents of oregano essential oils and oregano oil capsules.
They have been known for hundreds of years as one of the leading components of the fragrant oils extracted from flowers, leaves, and fruits.
Both γ-terpinene and p-cymene are prominent in wild oregano and may account for up to 15% of the oil.
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How to Take Oregano
Oregano essential oil contains many highly desirable properties making it useful for a large number of medicinal purposes.
It is safe to use topically, but certain precautions need to be taken.
If you want to take it internally, you can purchase capsules in a health food store and merely follow directions.
Bear in mind, oregano essential oil, like the essential oil of almost any herb, is highly concentrated, and is not meant to be taken internally or even applied topically in its concentrated form.
Any substance you can use to clean and disinfect your kitchen countertop is a substance you probably shouldn’t drink a glass full of it in its concentrated form, never mind the fact that if applied directly to the skin, it will burn it.
When you consider the potency of oregano essential oil, more is not better.
The other thing to remember is that it is only safe to ingest oregano essential oil from the wild oregano plant.
Artificially produced oregano oil should not be taken internally.
Make sure you know the source before ingesting any essential oil.
Oregano Oil Uses and Benefits
Thousands of years ago, the dried leaves of wild oregano were powdered, and the powder was sprinkled on food to preserve it from oxidation.
The original word was “ezov” which meant wild oregano or Origanum Vulgare.
To understand the uses of oregano, I’ll have to take you back to one central ingredient – carvacrol.
It is the prime efficacious component of oregano oil. It is naturally occurring, and the multitude of benefits of oregano oil is as a result of the synergism between carvacrol and many other constituents such as thymol and terpene.
Some people buy oregano to help with antioxidants.
This is because oxidation processes in the human body cause many health problems.
Antioxidants, such as oregano, help fight these processes and thus help stave off these diseases.
This herb has been shown to be a more potent antioxidant than apples, blueberries, potatoes, and oranges – which is somewhat shocking, especially that it is stronger than blueberries.
Of course, you should still consume these foods if you can and like them.
But taking a supplement like this can help boost the antioxidant power of the foods even more.
Oregano Essential Oil Uses
Oregano benefits are plentiful and include the treatment of digestive upsets and as an expectorant.
The leaf’s anti-parasitic properties are said to help rid the intestines of parasitic worms.
Oregano leaf is also used to treat specific menstrual problems, and in recent studies, oregano leaf was found to be very effective as an antifungal, antibacterial, antiviral and ant-parasitic treatment.
Its carvacrol, thymol, and gallic acid contents help in healing and have astringent properties as well.
Researchers have found that these compounds help loosen phlegm of the lungs and relieve bronchial passage spasms.
Oregano leaf is also used to treat bloating, gas, urinary tract problems, painful menstrual cramps and rheumatoid arthritis.
Oregano Oil has more uses than you can poke a stick at.
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The following is a list of ailments that oregano can help with, and how to use it as a treatment.
- Cold and flu
- Cold sores
- Ear infection
- Urinary tract infection
- Nappy rash
- Psoriasis, eczema
- Burns to prevent infection
- Methane emission from cows
- Dandruff, head lice, and skin fungus
- Athletes foot
The list is endless. For example, there are many forms of skin irritations, ranging from simple persisting itches to infections or swollen gums.
Topical application of oregano extract can help with these problems.
It is essential, however, to dilute the extract first. Merely dilute one drop of extract with one teaspoon of olive or mineral oil and then apply to the affected area.
Oregano extract can help with many digestive problems as well. The thymol and carvacrol compounds can significantly aid digestion and help calm an upset stomach from indigestion.
To help relieve your digestive system, place 2 or 3 drops of the extract in an 8–12 oz glass of juice or water.
The high concentrations of the anti-inflammatory compounds will help you feel relief shortly.
Sinus congestion from various origins (cold, flu, allergies, etc.) can also be helped with oregano.
The best way to use the oregano is to take it orally. Just add 3 drops to a 12-ounce glass of juice once a day for 3 – 5 days.
This method is also effective against fighting off sore throats and the common cold.
As soon as you feel yourself getting sick, begin a once-daily regimen of oregano-infused juice to help minimize cold symptoms.
There are different ways to administer oregano oil, you can:
Put drops under the tongue, add to a healthy drink, take oregano oil capsules, apply with a cotton ball soaked in oregano oil for breathing or a toothache.
Given the robust antibacterial action of oregano essential oil, some people add a few drops to body wash or liquid soap to heal wounds on the skin or to treat skin infections.
Instead of adding to liquids soap or body wash, oregano essential oil can be combined with olive oil and rubbed directly on the skin.
Again, make sure the essential oil is diluted, a few drops to a teaspoon is excellent, a ratio of one part essential oil to 2 parts olive oil is about as potent as you would want it.
Believe it or not, many people do not know of the many health benefits of the herb Oregano.
If you are looking for an herbal supplement to help with antioxidants, boost your vitamins and to help fight bacteria, then you should buy Oregano oil capsules at your local health food store or vitamin store.
As with any other herbal supplement, you should consult your doctor before or during using this herb for any health purposes.
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Oregano Benefits for Health and Wellness
Oregano is an effective diuretic and long used as a treatment to rid the body of excess water and prevent bloating.
The herb is a diaphoretic, which means that it can increase perspiration and helps cleanse the body of toxins through the skin and reduce fevers.
This works wonder for relieving symptoms of both colds and flu.
Another one of oregano leaf benefits is its ability to help treat nervous disorders, relieve irritability, convulsions, and general exhaustion and tension headaches.
Oregano leaf is said to have mild sedative qualities that have been shown to ease seasickness.
It is an excellent treatment for diaper rash, although due to the tender skin of babies, a degree of caution is needed. Don’t apply the essential oil directly to the skin. A drop or two in a teaspoon of olive oil is about right.
The same concentration, rubbed underneath the nostrils will relieve sinus problems, though this has to be done every day over a period.
Another approach is to put a few drops of the essential oil in water and inhale the steam.
Here’s a list of 15 oregano benefits.
- Oregano has powerful antibacterial as well as antiviral properties that can destroy harmful organisms that are often contributing factors to skin infections.
- Oregano significantly strengthens your immune system to help fight off internal infections.
- Digestive problems are made better with oregano’s antiparasitic properties.
- Consuming oregano regularly helps to increase flexibility in your joints and muscles.
- If you apply oregano oil topically, it can treat itchy skin and skin infections.
- Diluted oregano oil can be applied to irritated gums. It is critical to dilute it though because if used in its concentrated state, it can cause a severe burning sensation on the tongue.
- Oregano can improve respiratory health.
- You can mix a few drops in a glass of juice or milk for an adequate remedy for mild indigestion.
- One of the best things about oregano is its antioxidant properties.
- Oregano can help you manage lung and sinus congestion. Add a few drops of milk, juice or water and drink daily.
- Oregano is extremely rich in fiber which people never seem to get enough of.
- Oregano is packed with massive amounts of vitamins and nutrients. It contains vitamin A, vitamin C, calcium, manganese and omega-3 fatty acids.
- If you have a fever, oregano oil acts as a stimulant to increase perspiration and helps you sweat it out.
- If oregano is given as a warm infusion, it can relieve cramps, colic, muscle spasms or abdominal pain.
- You can apply dried leaves in a warm application to rheumatism and painful arthritic swelling.
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The best way to take advantage of oregano leaf benefits is to make is in tablet or pill form.
The recommended dosage is to take two pills once or twice a day with a full glass of water and if possible with meals to avoid stomach upset.
When taken orally, large amounts of oregano leaf can cause stomach upset, so it is best to start with the lowest dose and gradually work up to the label-directed dosage.
The same can be said about the antibacterial properties of the oil, making it quite useful in the treatment of bacterial infections, though it will not necessarily prevent such infections from occurring.
Make sure to use it in its diluted form, take extra care when ingesting it, and although you shouldn’t expect miracles, you can probably expect some positive results.
Oregano Oil Side Effects
With all these beautiful benefits. I bet you’re wondering what the side effects are of this miracle herb.
While oregano is considered safe, you should ask a doctor before using it for its medicinal properties and purposes.
Those with thyroid conditions may not be able to use oregano safely on a regular basis.
Oregano may slightly reduce your ability to absorb iron. If you are taking regular doses, you should combine them with iron supplements as well to counteract this.
Pregnant women commonly have iron deficiencies, so it is not recommended that you take oregano during pregnancy.
Oregano capsules may cause an adverse reaction when taken with some prescription medications.
Therefore, it is essential to ask the advice of a doctor before using oregano while taking prescription medications.
Oregano can be a helpful product when used correctly and as advised by a medical professional.
Though oregano is considered to be a very safe supplement, and if taken in small doses you should see little or no side effects.
There are, however, exceptions to every rule and sure people should be wary of taking oregano.
Some reactions may occur in people that are allergic to thyme, sage, mint, or basil since the plants are closely related.
If you have any of these allergies and notice a rash, skin irritation or nausea after taking oregano, discontinue use immediately and talk with your doctor.
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Because of its potent properties, oregano can help your body on many different fronts. Its antifungal and anti-inflammatory properties make it a useful weapon in fighting skin infections and digestive problems.
It can also help give your immune system a boost, and assist in warding off any unwelcome illnesses.
If you’re suffering from respiratory problems or tightness in your joints and muscles, oregano can help benefit you as well.
Oregano also helps with bacteria. Its two primary agents- thymol and carvacrol- are the reason why.
It has been proven to be very useful in illnesses and, in some cases, even more, effective than prescription antibiotics.
Of course, that is not to say that you should ditch the antibiotic prescription that your doctor gives you and buy oregano instead.
Instead, talk to your doctor and see if this herbal supplement is right for you to help with bacterial growth in your body.
Your doctor will help you decide if it is a good choice or if you should stick with a prescription antibiotic medication.
Be sure that you are taking this herb as a supplement and in the right dose.
Too much of anything, even all natural herbs, is not a good idea for anyone.
To ensure that you have a high-quality extract, whether it’s an oregano oil capsule or extract, make sure that the label confirms that it is derived from Origanum Vulgare and that it has at least a 70% concentration of carvacrol.
This is especially important if you choose to purchase an oregano extract online.
You will find it labeled as wild oregano oil, oregano oil capsule, oil of oregano, essential oil of oregano and many more.
No matter what it’s called, buying a high-quality product is crucial if you want to reap some of the benefits mentioned above.